If you frequent the storage review section here at TweakTown then you already know that I am fond of my Lenovo T61p portable, do it all, sits next to the bed when I sleep, workstation. A couple of weeks ago the T61p that has survived my brutality every day for the last three years was retired and replaced with a new Lenovo W701ds that features USB 3.0, dual monitors (on a notebook!!!!), dual 2.5" HDD bays and shipped with a Lenovo branded Toshiba controlled SSD. Lenovo sells more notebooks than most SSD manufacturers sell drives and they were also one of the first notebook manufacturers to offer an SSD option to consumers.
The OEM market doesn't move as rapidly as the enthusiasts market and disk drives are generally qualified and sold for several years before being replaced with the next technological leap. It is quite common to find a platter drive that was released on the market in a new notebook on the shelves of Best Buy or other big box store. For most enthusiasts a three year old part, if still in their possession has been sitting on a shelf for two years.
You have to be wondering why I am looking at the Lenovo branded 128GB SSD in the first place, since you can't really just order it at Newegg and since it is based on older Toshiba technology borrowed from JMicron. The reason is really quite simple; there are thousands of these on the market and anyone purchasing a new notebook from Lenovo has the option to upgrade the base HDD to one of these 128GB SSDs. For the W701ds, this upgrade has a cost of 320 USD if you pass on the 320GB HDD. If you add the 128GB Lenovo SSD to your system and keep the 320GB drive, you are adding 470 USD to the total cost of the notebook.
Today we are going to look at some of the available HDD options from Lenovo and see if the 128GB SSD currently offered is worth the investment.